Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Common Core- Text Structure

Digging deeper into Common Core: RI5

One of my goals this school year is to REALLY learn the ELA standards; what they mean as well as how to take them to a more rigorous level.  In an earlier post, Digging Deeper into each Standard, I dove into the world of RL6.

In this post, I want to look at RI5 which deals with text structure.  I find it helpful to look at the College Career Readiness standard first because that is our ultimate end goal.

CCR: Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (a section, chapter, scene, stanza) relate to each other and the whole.

Now for the standards K-8.  Looking at the vertical piece is extremely helpful because you can see how the standards build upon each other.

Now to dive deeper...  
A great start would be a quote from Lucy Calkins' Pathways to the Common Core: Accelerating Achievement.  I am currently reading this book and it has some great information about the ELA standards.
"To analyze structure, do this: Look back over the text, and ask yourself if you could divide it into parts.  Look at the text as if you were in a plane, flying above it.  Instead of seeing fields divided by a ribbon of roads, you see paragraphs.  Think about the meanings in those paragraphs, about the different sort of work that is being done in one part of the text, another, and another.  Ask what each part does."
- Lucy Calkins

I really liked this analogy. :)

So text structure is more than identifying whether it is a compare, chronology, problem/solution, etc.  It is about how a text is shaped to help a reader better understand the information.  It is about preparing your brain to take in knew information by looking at structure (cover to cover, text features, sections, paragraphs etc.)  Authors are very strategic in how the set up their information.  There is a purpose to what is included and how it is arranged which, when carefully thought about, plays a huge role in comprehension of nonfiction texts.

Here are some resources I provided for my teachers to help them understand and teach text structure.

Hope this information is helpful.  I would love to hear from all of you.  How have you taught this standard?  What resources help you understand the new Common Core State Standards?

Antoinette :)

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